Review of ONE THING’s Minimalistic Plant-Based Toners

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The YS Beauty Lab

It’s not quite summer yet, but my skin is already feeling plenty stressed and irritated. I’m getting a number of whiteheads and pimples, and my skin’s oil-water levels are all over the place! I decided to jump back to basics with my skin care routine to restore my skin’s balance.

Recently launched at YesStyle, ONE THING − as its name suggests – focuses on skin care with minimal ingredients. The Korean skin care brand formulates plant-based products led by single EWG green-grade ingredients.

As I’m finally halfway through all my toners from the 7-skin method challenge I did at the start of the year, I have the perfect excuse to stock up new ones! I tried not one but three toners from ONE THING:


First Impressions

At first glance, I thought the toners were housed in sleek glass bottles, like packaging from many other chic skin care brands, but the bottles from ONE THING are actually made of clear plastic! Each container is topped with a black screw cap and sealed with a logo sticker. The minimalistic aesthetic reminds me of luxury perfumes with a touch of vintage apothecary appeal.


Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract Toner

Ingredients list: Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Butylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin

 

What is it? A low-pH toner enriched with 100% calendula (pot marigold) extract. Its moisturizing and skin-soothing effects help to alleviate redness and encourage wound healing.

In detail:

Calendula is one of my go-to skin care ingredients, especially for toners, and ONE THING’s toner is no exception. The amber-colored formula has a watery thin consistency with a familiar herbal scent. The toner feels incredibly refreshing on skin, and absorbs quickly without any hint of stickiness afterwards.


Brassica Oleracea Italica Extract Toner

Ingredients list: Brassica Oleracea Italica (Broccoli) Extract, Butylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin

 

What is it? A water-type toner infused with 100% Jeju organic broccoli extract. Broccoli extracts are rich in Vitamins A and C and sulforaphane (an antioxidant), which are known to boost cell turnover, improve skin tone and combat free radicals by reinforcing the skin’s natural barrier.

In detail:

The brassica toner comes in a light citrine color, with a distinct botanical scent that smells more like a fresh plant as opposed to the herbal and floral notes I’m used to. The slightly strong fragrance may not appeal to everyone, but it dissipates fairly quickly. Similar to the calendula toner, the texture is lightweight, refreshing and hydrating on skin.


Artemisia Capillaris Extract Toner

Ingredients list: Artemisia Capillaris Extract, Butylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol

 

What is it? A hypoallergenic toner containing 100% artemisia capillaris (capillary wormwood) extract. Known for its skin-soothing properties, the artemisia capillaris plant belongs to the same family as mugwort, so it’s naturally packed with Vitamins A and C and niacin (Vitamin B3) to brighten complexion, purify pores, fortify the skin barrier and improve skin elasticity.

In detail:

This toner comes in a dark, tea-like color, with a unique scent that’s like a blend of cinnamon, whisky and dit da jow (a traditional Chinese medicinal wine). Its lightweight and watery texture feels nice and cool when applied on skin. The toner leaves a non-sticky dewy finish.


Additional Usage:

I only used these three products as standalone toners in my skin care routine. As noted on the packaging, they can also be used in other ways. You can:

  • – Mix with another toner for combined effects
  • – Add a few drops of toner to other products (such as moisturizer, serum and foundation) for a hydrating boost
  • – Soak a few cotton pads with toner and use as a mask pack
  • – Pour into a spray bottle with one part water and three part toner for a handy and refreshing face mist

The Verdict

Perhaps it’s because I got the Calendula and the Artemisia toners in 300ml versions, but I often spilled toner over my sink when dispensing it directly onto my palms. Although this happened much less when I used a cotton pad, I prefer warming non-exfoliating toners in my palms before applying onto my face. I have the Brassica toner in a 150ml bottle, which turned out to be easier to dispense than the bigger bottle. However, the smaller size doesn’t seem as economical as the 300ml version.

At the start of the trial, my skin was in one of its worst states of the year. After almost four weeks of consistent use of the ONE THING toners, my skin felt significantly calmer and appeared more matte with fewer spots. Some pesky hyperpigmentation also faded slightly. I don’t think the results are due to the toners alone, but they definitely played important roles in improving my skin condition!

All three toners complemented well with the other products in my current skin care routine. As each toner is made of only three to four ingredients, it’s safe to say that they are gentle enough for all skin types, including dry and sensitive skin. Out of the three, my least favorite is the Brassica toner due to its unusual scent, but overall I love this trio for the exceptionally hydrating effects and refreshing finish.

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